I Guess We’re All Dixiecrats Now

For decades, the South was the backbone of the Democrat Party.  After the American Civil War, from 1864 to 1932, only two Democrats were ever elected president.  (Andrew Johnson was Lincoln’s vice-president and he took over upon the latter’s assassination.)  In those 68 years, only Grover Cleveland and  Woodrow Wilson were able to make the cut.   For some perspective, think of it this way:  for two generations, the Republic had fourteen presidents –eleven of whom were Republican and only three who were Democrats.  This was an insurmountable electoral hurdle, often called the “Lincoln Lock”.

That didn’t mean that the Democrats were powerless.  They were able to consolidate their power in the former Confederacy and by closing ranks, were able to control the Congress.  Then in 1932, during the depths of the Great Depression, Franklin Delano Roosevelt cannily chose a Texan (John Nance Garner) to be his running mate.  In doing so, the Democrats dramatically increased their odds at the presidential level, winning the next 10 out of 20 elections.    

So how did Roosevelt do it?  Shrewdly.  Throughout FDR’s first two terms, he constantly placated the Southern Democrats in every way he could.  He created the Tennessee Valley Authority, which brought electricity to the South.  He vetoed anti-lynching laws.  It was during his tenure that the “Lost Cause” of the Confederacy was given the Hollywood treatment (Gone with the Wind) and statues of Confederate generals were placed all over the South.  It was because of FDR that the “Solid South” became even more solid.  And the Democrats who ran that region became known as “Dixiecrats”.

Now, why am I boring you with this trip down memory lane?  I’ll tell you why.  During the late 50s when the the Civil Rights movement was gaining steam, Dixiecrat governors, mayors, sheriffs, Congressmen and Senators fought tooth-and-nail to keep the old Jim Crow system in place.  To hear them tell it, legal racial segregation worked just fine and the Negroes were being stirred up by “outside agitators”.  

I’m not going to defend Jim Crow.  It was a horrible system and it needed to go.  But the Southern magistrates were not wrong; the truth of the matter was that there were several Northerners who were in fact making life difficult for the segregationist regimes.  They were in fact “agitators” and they were not from the South.

What’s my point?  Only this:  thanks to the recent spate of riots in Minneapolis (and Los Angeles and Atlanta and elsewhere), the mayor of that city and governor of Minnesota are stating that the majority of the rioting and looting is being done by –you guessed it–“outside agitators”.  [Editor Note:  Added the following clip 6/1 12:17 CT]  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qv-O4rnUToU&feature=share&fbclid=IwAR21hyAP31gSChX49c-QsRbvrdCcC_2aAgpEuTjIo-CRKFgF527IyJEWnwU

And you know what? They’re right!  The irony is too delicious for words, for now it is liberal magistrates who are being hoisted upon their own petard.   Democrats then and Democrats now, see what I mean by irony?

And you know what else?  These outside agitators (the majority of whom are white) are going to go back to their gentrified neighborhoods and drink their caramel soy macchiato lattes at the local Starbucks tomorrow and pat themselves on the back for a job well done.  Meanwhile, the poor black people who live in those neighborhoods that were “helped” by good white liberals and antifa types are going to be left to pick up the pieces of their shattered lives.  

This is unconscionable.  In the 1960s, the Civil Rights workers actually had something to show for their efforts in that the lives of ordinary blacks were improved.  Not this time.  Every time there’s a riot (which are invariably whipped up by white agitators), black people are left to live in the smoldering ruins of what was once their neighborhood. 

So if you wonder why during the recent festivities you saw responsible black people trying to intercede and stop the looting, now you know.  None of these protests were about George Floyd at all.  It was just an excuse by the cultural Marxists to sow discord, create mayhem, and in so doing, hopefully take down Trump.  After all, nothing else has worked.  Not Russiagate, not Ukrainegate, not the coronavirus pandemic. 

But here’s where it gets really ironic:  is it possible that these outside agitators are using their resources to destroy these inner-city neighborhoods to exact an  unconscious racial revenge against blacks?  Unwittingly of course.  I for one don’t think these people are racist in the classic Bull Connor sense of the word.  But they are doing a great deal of damage to black neighborhoods and businesses, aren’t they?  And who benefits?  Not the people who live there and now have no economic infrastructure left in place.  Thanks, you know, to all those right-thinking white liberals.  Kinda makes you go “hmmmm….”

The reality is that every time there is a riot, the people living there eventually leave because the areas become so blighted that they become uninhabitable.  Literally.  But then, within a few years, real estate developers swoop in and buy entire city blocks and buildings for pennies on the dollar.  Yes, you heard that right:  these developers make out like bandits and before you know it, former slums are gentrified, rents increase significantly, poor blacks move out and urban liberals move in.  Whether there’s an actual racial animus behind this whole cycle is immaterial, because in the final analysis, that’s what’s happens.  

So, where does this leave us?  Clearly the corona “pandemic” didn’t work.  The betting odds show Trump winning handily and the more blue cities that burn, the you can rest assured that that state will go into the red column in 2020.  Though the economy has collapsed, even some of Obama’s economists are predicting a hockey-stick shaped recovery.  Technically, we may still be in a recession by election time but it’ll be confined largely to those blue states which are governed by wretched  Gretchens.  For the rest of America, the trajectory will be on the ascendant.  

So that’s why you are seeing fine American cities like Los Angeles, Atlanta, Brooklyn and so on continue to burn.  Right now, we are at twenty-three and counting; 21 of them are blue cities.  This is a recipe for disaster and we will see the Ferguson Effect metastasize to include entire cities, not just the inner- urban minority core.  Basically, police and firefighters will say to the liberal citizenry, “you elected these people, now you pay the consequences”.  This will boomerang of course:  even liberals will become red-pilled when their neighborhood businesses are demolished.  Wait and see how many Hollywood liberals start buying AR15s when Rodeo Drive gets trashed.  (Was it Norman Podhoretz who said that “a neoconservative is a liberal who was mugged the day before”?) 

In any event, I imagine that these blue cities will continue to burn on an intermittent basis.  Look for indicators like a rise in the stock market, a decrease in unemployment, or a rise in housing starts.  Perhaps the Red  Chinese capitulating on some trade issue.  Metrics like these will increase Trump’s chances for reelection.  They will also serve as triggers, which will cause another incident to take place, with attendant rioting.  

Why?  Because of outside agitators.  And the delicious irony will be that it is in those states governed by Democrats.  

The more things change, the more they stay the same. 

P.S. This is how you break the back of Antifa, and this is exactly what President Trump is doing with his latest Executive Order:  https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1267095199576023040.html



  1. George Michalopulos says

    I should feel sorry for this guy on principle, but I don’t.  Like all leftist agitators, he had it coming to him:


    Who was it that said “If ye sow the wind, ye will reap the whirlwind”?  

  2. George Michalopulos says
  3. George Michalopulos says

    You know one thing I like about leftists?  How they don’t think that karma doesn’t apply to them:  https://twitter.com/LeighTauss/status/1267085577419186178ly 

    I imagine we’re getting close to that point in the “revolution” when the Girondists are getting ready to take over from the Jacobins or when Stalin took over from the Bolsheviks.


  4. George Michalopulos says

    File this under:  “Hypocrisy, When Snowflakes Feel the Heat”


  5. Sage-Girl says

    Sage-Girl says
    May 31, 2020 at 11:22 am

    This bears repeating as I wrote other day:
    PRAY ?for Peace!! ?Our Nation is engulfed in flames,for just 1 sadistic White policeman causing death of 1 Black man, it gives excuse for masses of leftist Blacks to riot, loot + burn down the town — in Minneapolis, NYC, across America.  God bless Trump for sending National Guard.Satanic forces have sent a global Pestilence & now, violent trouble makers Antifa + BLM to kill police + follow hate filled Leftist Anti-White Narrative. The White Christian Male is under attack like no one else.  How many times have Whites been murdered by Blacks + there’s NEVER any riots or looting? 


  6. Sage-Girl says

    We cannot go to church + couples cannot hold hands … But you can go to protests + cheer on violent Rioters looting + burning down the town + the ubiquitous leftist news outlets will applaud you for disrespecting law + order. 
    THIS is why we need President Trump!
    THIS is why Orthodox Christians are insane + sell outs to ever vote Democrat again.
    GO TRUMP!??

  7. lexcaritas says

    George, I don’t like the photo.  Who are these guys wrongfully associating the St. Andrew’s cross and the flag of the Confederacy with National Socialism?  This is not good, and should be repudiated.  The former already has problems because of its association in the minds of many with slavery.  It doesn’t need this.  These people are foolish and not motivated by love or anything bespeaking nobility of character.

    • George Michalopulos says

      Lex, I don’t disagree. One of the points of this essay however was that because the Left is rapidly “losing the narrative”, they are now blaming the alt.right for all the mayhem. In other words, not only can the left and its media lackeys not think, they are historically ignorant as well.

      I see the day when the Cross of St Andrew in all its form –including the battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia–will fly very proudly. Both as a symbol of true resistance and authentic American heritage.

    • Antiochene Son says

      Maybe they love their own heritage, and since society gives them no way to celebrate it, they become provocateurs.

      I would wager that most so-called “white supremacists” are not objectively white supremacists. Like all people, they love what is theirs. And while Western society has moved towards letting different groups celebrate what they love, it has come at the direct expense of letting the host society uphold what it loves.

      For these people, everything that is theirs is not only ignored, it is actively demonized. So they fight back and perhaps go too far in some places.

      What won’t help is to demonize them further, push them out of society, make examples of them, and call everything they love evil. That is what will lead to true violence.

      No symbol or word has the power to hurt anyone.

  8. cynthia curran says

    Trump and Republicans failed to convert young Democrats by cutting down immigration from India. The reason Silicon Valley is so left politics is  about 60 percent of the workforce is Asian from India with no ties with Christianity. If young people had seen the Republicans allow them to do tech jobs and other jobs instead of folks from India, maybe they would had not been so Democratic,

    • LonelyDn says

      With all do respect, Silicon Valley isn’t liberal because of Asia and India. Those cultures are traditionally- well, traditionally traditional. 

      • George Michalopulos says

        True, but Asian immigrants for some reason gravitate to the left when voting for 2 reasons:

        1. Free stuff and 

        2. No cultural affinity for the historical American nation & it’s demographics.

        The latter is particularly true simply because the GOP by default has subsumed that role because the Democrats have become alienated from America & its folkways and customs.

        • Sage-Girl says

          So true George, 
          I’m friends with Hindu couple from Bengal, India ??, they’re great Trump supporters… I know them from the Trump campaign … + remember in the news, when Trump went to India, there was Indian man who built statue of our President as a god + poured milk ?+ flowers?over Trump’s image? Well, my Indian friends also adore him so much, there’s image of Trump in their house covered in garland of flowers! 

        • I would say it goes beyond “free stuff.”    Is there room for a Christian Social Democrat in America?   In the rest of the world, this is not a contradiction or controversial (in some places its even expected).
          Perhaps it isn’t alienation from America, but rather a different idea of what America should be.   Let’s not fall into the trap of accusing people we disagree with of not being “true Americans.”

          • George Michalopulos says

            Brandon, there could be room for a Social Democrat, or better yet, Christian Democrat Party, but the former presupposes a homogeneous ethno-nationalist state.  Think Sweden, Denmark, Israel, etc., where the bennies are divvied up for the common good.  Mainly because everybody is distantly related to each other.

            The latter presupposes a homogeneous state that also has a historic Christian tradition/national religion.  Again, think of the official Lutheran churches of Scandinavia, Roman Catholic churches of Spain, France, etc.

            The only hope for America as I see it (and this is based on our national non-homogeneity/secular heritage) is for the various States to continue to gain more autonomy, to become more ethnically peculiar and to view their Representatives in Congress as “delegations” (as John Adams said).  Maybe bring back Nullification.

            Also, I would recommend that Red counties in Blue states (i.e. downstate Illinois, upstate New York, the Upper Peninsula of Michigan, etc.) secede from their respective states and become their own states.


            • This would bring about the dissolution of the United States, which may be inevitable anyway (nothing is certain).

  9. https://www.oca.org/news/headline-news/holy-synod-issues-statement-on-recent-tragic-events
    OCA sinks to further irrelevance. Where is the condemnation of the rioters? Where was their condemnation of Mohamed Noor, killer of Justine Damond? Did the OCA not read that the autopsy found no evidence of traumatic asphyxia?
    A synod of clowns for a clown church in clown world.

    • Sage-Girl says

      thanks for mentioning this, I saw it also from OCL – Orthodox Christian Laity… we should write to them – Holy Synod sound shallow + PC, they’ve no business even making a statement, who asked them? I don’t have access to reach them, hoping you speak out Basil.
      Again: Just shameful – not condemning rioters. 

      • Mikhail⁸ says

        AB Elpi followed suit. They always mimick each other these days.

        • Sage-Girl says

          I’m planning to write letter to Elpidoforos + express this point + let him know it’s not acceptable to many American Orthodox.  It’ll probably ruin any future positive exchange I have with him, but hey, damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead! ???

      • I don’t have access to the OCA synod either. What good would it do? One thing we’ve all learned this past few months is that most of our bishops simply don’t care about us or our opinions.

      • Yes, a new development. So that’s one autopsy that says yes, and one that says no. Either way, my other points still stand. Oh, and where was their condemnation of that black guy who dropped a white child from the balcony in a mall?

        • So saddened to hear about this…about the black guy who dropped a white child from the balcony in a mall. When did this happen?!

          • Joseph A. says

            Precisely. You don’t know because the news didn’t run it constantly for weeks and months. The slime media cherry-pick situations to cover that fit their story while making actual statistics rather taboo. Consider interracial violence in the U.S., or the demographics of sexual assault. Law and Order isn’t an accurate depiction of perps. in this country. In a land of 330 million souls, you can find any kind of story. If everyone focuses on a particular one, then that becomes the dominant “virtual” reality. Police are hunting down black men. COVID-19 will kill us all. Sadists are putting razor blades in Halloween candy. Fake, fake news!!

            Journalists are largely children of Satan, the father of lies.

            ¿Dónde está Generalíssimo Franco cuando más lo necesitábamos?

            • Sage-Girl says

              Joseph A.
              Good point about slime media, how they cherry ? pick certain stories to focus on + it’s virtual reality  — so particular story of black man’s death by white cop during lockdowns hit America like 9/11 planes crashing. Unbelievable!

            • George Michalopulos says

              Alex, Joseph and Basil are correct.  Interracial violence in America is horrible.  But it’s 98% black-on-white.  

              The mainstream media has chosen to distract our attention away from this sad reality in order to craft their own clever, anti-American narrative.

              They’ve largely failed to do this with Moslem atrocities because they are so spectacular (e.g. San Bernadino, gay disco in Miami, etc.).  But then again, for the time being, anti-Islamic fervor serves as a useful safety valve and causus belli for endless wars in the Middle East.

              • Sage-Girl says

                Sadly its true George & Basil,
                what’s spooky is First, a virus Pandemic from far away assailed us, forcing entire world in lockdown …
                now a different kind of Pandemic has started: for one black man’s death it’s spawned out of control violence + race riots + more lockdown.
                 Thank goodness for Trump’s gesture in black + white photo walking outside White House + leading the people.  Awesome.

          • Another autopsy has indicated ‘homicide by cardiopulmonary arrest,’ with no signs of suffocation and evidence of fentanyl and meth in his system.
            So, basically: take drugs, commit a crime, resist arrest, die in the process = martyrdom.
            We have ourselves a manufactured crisis, it seems.

    • The second autopsy apparently show death by asphyxiation. Nevertheless, they are still a clown posse looking to hitch a ride in a clown car. 

      • Mikhail, you’re right…the OCA should be hitching a ride in a clown car. Can they bum a ride off of the GOA, AOCA, and the rest?! 😉

  10. Gail Sheppard says

    For any of you who are still unconvinced this whole thing wasn’t staged, take a look at this.  


    • George Michalopulos says

      It’s funny, isn’t it? It’s the black natives who are trying to stop this foreign interloper from damaging the AutoZone store. Thank you for the video.

    • Sage-Girl says

      Thanks Gail – for video,
      that’s really scary what’s going on! Satan has landed upon us, first a Pandemic + then this; I’ve never seen such horror before – but as my Cathedral priest Fr. John always repeated in our Weds nite group:
      ”There’s Nothing New Under The Sun” ? 

  11. Archpriest Paisius McGrath says

    “Outside agitators”? You mean like the self proclaimed “patriot” thugs who drape themselves in the honorable flag of the CSA, put the various CSA flags on their pick up trucks and beer mugs, and use it to further their own racists and hateful agenda , the same ones who a few years ago descended on the peaceful town of my birth and brought with them the equally hateful and moronic thugs of Antifa?   I had high hopes when I started reading this piece, George, for I was hoping for a thoughtful and well reasoned discussion of Southern Democrats and the political shift from a Democrat majority South to a Republican dominated South. But then you shifted from a discussion of political changes in the South and Dixiecrats to how everything including the Covid-19 pandemic, is an attempt by the alleged TDS crowd  to get rid of the duly elected President and why President Donald J Trump must be re-elected lest we descend into liberal anarchy. I honor the President because he is our elected President and I pray for him just as I have prayed for every president regardless of party and regardless of whether I support all their policies or not, but I do not support many of his ideas and policies, just as I would not have supported his run for president had he run before he suddenly became a “Republican”. This does not make me a TSD or  mean that opposition to his political agenda means that I use every event as a means to to make sure he is a “one term President”.(wonder who said that) I am a Southern Democrat born in the South and now living in the South again, and I will react to any attempts to use southern history, its flag, its cultural symbols as a means to achieving an agenda no matter what that agenda is. When on this coming Saturday- the day before Holy Pentecost- I and the faithful of the mission I serve in the faithful and God-loving  and God protected OCA Diocese of the South- gather at the local cemetery to celebrate Memorial Saturday in the manner of our Orthodox Faith we will begin in an area of the local cemetery where there are rows of graves of young southern men who gave the full measure of their devotion while still in their teens- they died not for modern “patriot” thugs who are draped in the flag they died for nor their masters who use Southern history to further their agenda!

    • George Michalopulos says

      I’m sorry Fr, but I believe you are displacing my arguments. I wrote nothing that was racist or racialist. I merely pointed out that Antifa and other such organizations are overwhelming white or white-led. And that they don’t live in the neighborhoods that are presently being destroyed.

      As for imputing racism to those whom you do not know, well, there’s nothing I can do about that. I will say this, for most partisans of the Old Confederacy, it’s about heritage, not hate.

      • Archpriest Paisius McGrath says

        I apologize George for misreading you. For me the use of words such as “outside agitators” is a loaded phrase that too often has been used to mean ” the other” if not further explained. Context has more to it than meets the eye. In the case of Charlottesville- your article photo brought back unfortunate memories of this- both the UNITE THE RIGHT militias and their cohorts and the ANTIFA anarchists and their cohorts never belonged their. The image of the UTR militants walking at night with lit torches through the campus of UVA- whether I once worked for several years- or to see the images of both groups marching with violent intent through the beautiful brick cobbled streets of the Downtown pedestrian mall- where I worked for a summer at a bookstore/coffee shop- will be in my mind for a long time.

        • George Michalopulos says

          Apology accepted.

          While I condemn the racism and anti-Semitism of many at the “Unite the Right” rally back in Charleston, I am not at all ashamed of my European (in my case, Hellenic) heritage.  Nor should Old Stock Americans be ashamed of their heritage.  

          As for the racism that exists in some of those precincts, what about the racism inherent in the very theology of the Nation of Islam?  How come no politician –black or white–was condemned when they stood on the same stage as Minister Farakhan at Aretha Franklin’s funeral?

          And, speaking for myself, as someone with some Ashkenazi heritage (2% according to Ancestry.com), why does nobody condemn the absolutely horrible racism that is found in the Talmud?  If I were an observant Jew, I certainly would.

          European heritage is something to be exceedingly proud of.  It is for all practical purposes the only history that matters.  By constantly criticizing those who treasure their history as “nazis” or “racists”, when neither is necessarily the case, one drives them further into the embrace of those ideologies.  

          • Archpriest Paisius McGrath says

            I agree and am proud of my European heritage: both my maternal South German Amish ancestry who in the 1690’s settled on the frontier of Penn’s Colony to be free of religious persecution; and my paternal Irish ancestors who arrived in Chicago in the 1880’s to be free of the economic effects of the Potato Famine. I’m just more suspicious of the racial superiority that echoes in too much that is out there. Further I oppose racism and racial superiority wherever it rears its noxious head including Nation of Islam.

            • George Michalopulos says

              I’m glad to hear that Fr. However let us be honest: nobody calls out the Nation of Islam or the Haredim for their supremacist views, do they?

      • I was born in Virginia, and have roots in the “Old South.”    I know, for many white people in the South, they see the Confederate flag and they imagine Robert E. Lee on his horse.   The romantic myth of the South.   
        When black people see that flag, it means something very different.   People argue that the American flag was “the flag of slavery” a lot longer than the stars and bars.   Technically, that is true.    However, the American flag was drenched in blood to crush the slave system (of course it wasn’t done out of affection for the black man—I reject whitewashing and revision both equally).    The Stars and Bars were the banner of those who wanted to keep black people in chains.    Later, it became the symbol of “resistance” for those who wanted to keep black people “in their place.”
        I think the balance is tipped quite forcefully against Lynyrd Skynyrd and “States Rights.”    Right to do what?   Let’s not be obtuse on purpose to serve our politics, whatever they are.  The North was just as racist as the South was, they just didn’t think the black man’s place was in chains.    It isn’t being a snowflake or SJW to acknowledge the reality of what the Confederacy was and what it represents for non-white people.   We can say that there were honorable men in the Confederacy and consign it to the dustbin of history (like Erwin Rommel is honored while Nazi Germany is condemned—-it’s not a contradiction).

        • George Michalopulos says

          Brandon, you are not incorrect in many of your arguments.  The problem however is when one puts a (supposedly) defeated ideology in “the dustbin of history” it is invariably replaced with another, more odious one.  One which infects the victors in a more virulent way.

          Consider:  nobody believes in Communism anymore as an economic system.  The USSR is kaput.  Red China is a hyper-crony-capitalist state operating on hard Confucian principles.  All of the former Communist nations of old were predicated on the tenets of Karl Marx.  Yet cultural Marxism has seeped into the West as a noxious, invisible gas and it is presently destroying all that was good about America.

          Would it not have been better, and more Christian and humble, for the Northern victors to accept that the South –though defeated–was essentially no different from the United States as a whole between 1789-1860?  And that it was not evil in and of itself? 

          Sagacious victors invariably know that wars are usually hard-fought and that the shoe can be put on the other foot rather quickly.  Lincoln to his credit had no desire to treat the Old South harshly.  In fact, upon hearing of Lee’s surrender at Appomattox, he told the Army band to play “Dixie”.

          The Radical Republicans on the other hand, were almost genocidal in their hatred of Southerners.  They literally drove Southerners into the embrace of toxic racialism.  As I said, wise victors are sagacious.  Because they know that for every action, there’s an equal and opposite reaction.

          So yes, I will continue to fly the battle flag of the Army of Northern Virginia and honor the bravery and martial genius of Generals Lee, Stuart, Forrest and Jackson (among others).

          • I agree that it is revisionism to portray the South as evil and the North as good.   However,  the Confederacy was built for the perpetuation of slave power and white supremacy.  The South and the Confederacy are not synonymous, any more than Germany and Nazism is.   We should not allow our own politics to blind us to the truth that the Stars and Bars have a hateful meaning to our non-white brothers and sisters.    Is it Christian to fly a flag and toast a regime that would have stomped them into the ground if they got “too uppity”?   
            In our haste to “get over” the Civil War we didn’t properly address the issues.   We conceded the “Noble Cause” narrative to the South in order to reunify the country as quickly as possible (and keep black people “in check”)    But did this heal the wounds?   I would contend they did not, as the current riots indicate.  You can only sweep so much under the rug of prosperity.  When that rug is disturbed, the dust kicks up.    There are old men living today who remember being called “Boy” and being unable to use a White facility.    What are the spiritual and social costs of such a system?  We didn’t really ask that question collectively, we just focused on the dollars and cents (because as a culture, that is what we worship).
            We wanted to “move on” from the Civil Rights era, because it made white liberals uncomfortable.   How does a community recover from centuries of degradation?  What about the effects on White Americans?  White people in America have feared Black people since the beginning—the fear of the Slave revolt has transformed into fear of “the Ghetto.”  This is a really deep and gut wrenching conversation, but it isn’t one we are interested in having, culturally.
            Because it means we would all have to give up something, to sacrifice something.  To acknowledge that maybe its ALL wrong in some ways.
            That toxic racialism was already there.  It only took a nudge to make it a reality.   The fact is, that the slave society permeated every aspect of Southern society, and it was the “default” way of things.   Black people were never going to get a fair shake, because Slavery wounded the White Soul too.  Blind, deaf, and dumb.

    • AnonSaysWhat says
    • George Michalopulos says

      Fr, all I did was point out two things:

      1. the majority of the rioters were white, Antifa types, and
      2. it is largely black neighborhoods that were torched.

      I did infer racism as a partial reason for Antifa’s damage to black areas but only in an ironic sense. In any event, the KKK was the armed wing of the post-Reconstruction Democrat Party while now Antifa is.

      And both are masked. Ironies continue to abound.

      • Most of the videos I have seen are either predominately black rioters, or evenly mixed.

    • Sure looks like TDS to me.

  12. Sage-Girl says

    sorry you feel this way, but maybe you’ve forgotten your Orthodox faith tenets do Not align with today’s Democrat party agenda …
     guess coming from the South has lead to these perceptions, but decide who your loyalty should go first ?

    • Archpriest Paisius McGrath says

      Again, I do not support abortion, gay marriage or many moral positions where the modern Democrat party has gone in the last several decades. I do not vote for a candidate just because they are Democrat; I have voted in every local, state, national election since I was eligible, and each time I have voted for whom I thought was the best overall candidate. My point in all this has been a simple one: there are Democrats who do not support ALL the positions of the National Party including Democrats who are Pro-Life, oppose Gay marriage, and cannot because called PRO DEATH. The simple fact is that while we are small in numbers we are there; no matter what anyone else believes or thinks to the contrary.
      And no I have not forgotten anything about my Orthodox Faith to which God led me after a long spiritual journey. Go on a field trip: visit Saints Peter and Paul Ukrainian Orthodox parish in Lyndora, PA where I served as pastor for 13 1/2 years; Holy Virgin Ukrainian Orthodox Church in Arnold, PA where I served for 4 years as pastor; visit with  the staff and campers at All Saints Ukrainian Orthodox Camp where I served for 12 summers; visit with the Orthodox nuns at Transfiguration Monastery in Ellwood City, PA where I served for 9 years; come and visit Christ the Savior Orthodox Mission in McComb,MS where I am currently serving while on sabbatical to work on writing projects. Ask them what I have taught; as them how I have conducted myself as an Orthodox priest; tell them you believe I have forgotten the tenets of Holy Orthodoxy and see what they tell you.

      • Sage-Girl says

        Thank you for your holy service – I believe your loyalty …
        just please, I beg you,
        never vote Democrat again. They do not help our cause. 

      • George Michalopulos says

        Well now, Fr, you have another excellent reason to not vote Democrat:  it’s only Blue cities led by liberal Democrat mayors, chiefs of police and district attorneys that are descending into chaos.

        Mind you, I fully believe that many of these liberal magistrates are soy-boys (like Mayor Jacob Frey of Minneapolis) who would literally stand aside as the mobs burned down their houses or raped their wives but others are allowing this for a reason.  Two actually:

        1.  to take down President Trump and
        2.  to benefit their cronies in the real estate world.

        There’s another reason:  once the inner-city blacks have been gentrified out of their cities, they will be replaced by white hipsters who not only have more disposable income but will continue to vote Democrat.

        • Can anybody name these mysterious pro-life and pro-traditional marriage Democrats that we are hearing so much about?

          • Archpriest Paisius McGrath says

            Two examples that come immediately to mind:
            1) Colin Peterson: US House of Representives of MN District 7 since 1991. A member of the Democrat-Labor- Farmer Party , he has consistently voted pro life including against aborted fetus stem cell research. He voted for the Defense of Marriage Act.
            2) John Bel Edwards: Governor of Louisiana since 2016. In 2017 signed bill against abortion after 15 weeks. In 2018 signed Fetal Heartbeat Bill . 

            • Peterson lost his endorsement from the National Right to Life in January.
              John Bel Edwards said that Louisiana must make sure other health care locations are available to provide services before blocking Planned Parenthood from Medicaid. 
              Lipinski has a 100% pro life rating.
              So there you have it Father.  You named three.  So aside from these three (and perhaps there are few more?) you will concede that Orthodox Christians should vote for the pro-life/pro traditional marriage candidate (usually conservative/Republican) for the majority of elections?

              • Archpriest Paisius McGrath says

                Peterson did but not that of the Democrats for Life. These are just three examples. Small in number, yes, but illustrative of the larger point that not all Democrats accept or follow the party line. Orthodox Christians ought to vote their conscience informed by their faith regardless of party and regardless of of political expedience or expectance of power or success.

                • George Michalopulos says

                  Part of the problem Fr is one of chronology:  once a person hits 4o, he realizes he’s probably crossed the halfway line.  As such, if one is wise, he’s not going to waste his time with wasting assets.
                  And let’s be honest, pro-life Democrats (God bless ’em) are a wasting asset.  I suppose that if they hold fast to their faith and principles while remaining in that party then one day, perhaps, in a generation or two, they might be rewarded.
                  But until then 3,000 babies are murdered every year in their mothers’ wombs here in America.

                  • DisappointedOrthodox says

                    Correction George… 3000 per DAY.
                    One slaughtered child every 30 seconds. And the Democrat platform supports this. 

                • You did not answer my question Fr. Paissius.

                  • Archpriest Paisius McGrath says

                    They should vote for candidates who support pro life and traditional marriage no matter their political affiliation. Should they vote only on the basis of those two issues all the time? I can’t answer that question. Each of us will answer to God for our actions including voting, both of those are of great importance, but to vote only on the basis of those. The answer for me is no and I will give account for that whether right or wrong.  I cannot answer that for every Orthodox Christians.

                    • I’m not understanding. You said that people should vote for candidates who support pro life and traditional marriage…but you don’t necessarily do that. Did I get that right?

                    • Father, I am trying to understand how you can believe as an Orthodox priest that you may vote for someone who intends to kill babies in the womb, whose vote will cause it. The Holy Innocents cry out.  In no war or evil tyranny has human life, the most innocent life been lost as it is in abortion.  I just cannot fathom how you can believe anything is “more important.”  Christian charity can address every social ill if we will and God can heal every mistake in understanding in the living, but to participate knowingly in the butchering slaughter of the most vulnerable and innocent is simply beyond the pale to me.  Please witness an abortion, see the photos. As a medical student I delivered babies, as a psych resident I saw the despair and disintegration of the person and deadening of the soul forced into an abortion by others, as a psychiatrist I see the damage caused to every woman who has had an abortion (whether through depression and suicide and or even worse through a hardening of soul and spirit) and to the men who have encouraged them to do so, and even worse see the actual result of an abortion to the child.  Most tragic is to see the blindness to this reality in someone who is a priest.  I am so sorry Father for whatever has blinded you in this way and pray someday you will see.  I appreciate your honesty but grieve that people reading this may give your unOrthodox opinion here more weight than the Orthodox Church’s very clear teaching which you say may be ignored,  to the harm of so many. God be with you and help you, Father.  Until then, Father, would you at least consider not voting if you cannot abide the pro-life option. Please abstain.

                    • One cannot serve God and mammon.

          • Archpriest Paisius McGrath says

            Dan Lipinski 3rd District Illinois
            Consistently votes Pro Life, voted for Defense of Marriage Act

        • Antiochene Son says

          Indeed. These Blue States will sacrifice their citizens, their livelihoods, and civilization itself just to try making Trump look bad. It is wickedness.

      • It is nice that you have garnered a good teaching reputation amongst some of yours peers and those you have served.
        However, anyone who votes for politicians who support abortion and/or sodomy…you will answer before the dread judgement seat of God.

  13. Sometimes, the only peace to be had is on the other side of a nasty war.  This is likely one of those times.  Events over the last four years or so, especially those over the last year, should clarify for all sane and honest people that the Right is right and the Left is evil.  Despite the most sinister intentions of the DNC and the MSM, most of what has transpired, though orchestrated against Trump, has had the opposite effect not only of bolstering him toward re-election but furthering the cause of the Hard Right (of which I count myself a member) in the United States. 
    No enemies on the Right:  I honor the Old South, “warts” and all, as an example of honorable heritage in an age when slavery was normal and accepted.  No apologies.  Furthermore, I believe the Civil Rights movement was a tragic and stupid mistake on the part of the whites who participated in it.  It is just the latest failure of multiculturalism which has broken down everywhere it’s been tried – here, Europe, South Africa, etc.  Trainwreck of abysmal failure because disparate races/ethnicities are better separate and are naturally mutually hostile.  It is not taught, it is genetic.
    So more power to the Confederate flag wavers.  And though I do not embrace the anti-semitic or genocidal doctrines of neo-Nazis, I will not utter a word against them.  No enemies on the Right.  Period.  We’re beyond that.  Whoever is aiming in the right direction is an ally at this point.
    The reason we are beyond that is that the Left, from centrist Demsheviks and RINO’s leftward, are now a clear and present danger to the personal safety and integrity of normal Americans, let alone a danger to the Constitution.  It is not all of the Left as defined above that are rioting.  But it is all of the Left as defined above that are supporting the rioters in spirit as well as in material aid in many cases.
    There is a difference between demonstrating and rioting.  The difference is property destruction and violence.  The rioters should be overcome by any means necessary, bar none.  And now that they are threatening to take their party to residential neighborhoods, if they are stupid enough to do so, it may very well get ungodly bloody.  There are many armed suburbanites and attacking their property or families will likely be fatal to many of the attackers.
    And perhaps that is what we really need, a truly monumental number of Antifa fatalities to punctuate the lesson in American civics.

    • Where is Christ in this post, friend?

      • I was wondering the same thing; where is Christ?!

        • Gail Sheppard says

          He is withdrawing His hand.

          • Where is Christ in your questioning of my post?  Defending roving bands of atheistic, anarchist thugs threatening to take violence and destruction into residential neighborhoods?  Were Dimitri Donskoy (commemorated today, btw) and Alexander Nevsky saints or not?  What about David who wrote the psalms and killed his “tens of thousands”?  And what of Christ Himself who, as stated in Chapter 19 of the Apocalypse of St. John, will feed the flesh of the multitude of enemies He slays to the birds of the air?
            I think you must have us Christians confused with Jains.  It is indeed apparent we don’t believe in the same God.  It’s not the first time, after all, that this nonsense has come up.

          • What u don’t like is the violent tone of righteous indignation present in my post and somehow fancy that this makes it unchristian.  Yet I would remind u all that God rained fire and brimstone on Sodom and Gemorrah for far less than what we have allowed in the US and that repeatedly He has exhorted us to “purge the evil” from among us.
            We should not generalize Christ’s injunctions to His people, the Judeans, to not resist the evil Romans and bless them when they were cursed by them.  In context, that made perfect sense.  But context is everything.  Sending His Apostles out to mission to the gentiles, He ordered them to arm themselves.  Far, far too much is made of Christ’s alleged non-violence.  It is rather a myth emphasized in the West since the two world wars.  In the middle ages, He was most often characterized as a righteous judge.  Hardly a pacifistic role.
            This is another angle in which modern liberalism has infiltrated the Church.

            • Gail Sheppard says

              Yeah, I’m not big on violence. I’m REALLY big on God who holds all the power.

              • Joseph A. says

                I really don’t know how to reconcile providence with what we know of history. Certainly, the Lord doesn’t hold “all the power” because men with a bit of power have wielded it rather viciously in many places and many times (most?). God has delegated power, and his stewards have largely mismanaged.
                Given that, when I look at this situation, I think of the French revolution. Of the Bolsheviks. Did God really pull puppet strings during the Terror? During the Russian theomachy? Did he cause the destruction of La Vendée? Of the White Army?
                Violence comes unbidden to men of good will. Will they defend their cities, their families, their societies? Or let the barbarians destroy civilization, all the while thinking good thoughts about their moral sanctity and “Christ.” Turning the other cheek, or kneeling before possessed hordes? Did our ancestors sing “Kumbaya” as Mohammedan armies infiltrated Christendom? And those armies were far, far, far more sane, civilized, and righteous than our enemies now.
                Charity does not entail civilization suicide. Such thinking is psyop from hell itself and its enlisted fools on earth.

                • Gail Sheppard says

                  I’m not AT ALL happy about what I’m seeing. Misha, I’m sure, knows this.

                  • Yes, I feel u, Gail.
                    I’m not fond of violence myself.  I’m just under no illusion about God’s character with respect to the subject.  And I’m completely intolerant of non-violent or “nice” sanctimony.  He came not to bring peace, after all.
                    Perhaps though, it is better to look at it as God having all the power but restraining Himself in order to allow for the free will of angels and men.  Thus He tests and refines all, skewing whatever happens toward His purposes.
                    Maybe He has given America a last chance.  Maybe she will pass the test.  Maybe she will fail it.  Maybe her fate is already sealed.  But maybe God will not leave it to our free will if He has other plans for a revived America.  The republic may have outlived its usefulness to God and be destined to dissolve, regardless of the will of the people.
                    We will know in time.

                    • Gail Sheppard says

                      What I meant was Christ was holding back His hand and unleashing the evil one. The thousand years appears to be coming to an end. – With regard to America, God’s hand is present: I think we continue to have a few righteous men. 😉

                    • Gail,
                      I think the thousand years came to an end in 1917 with the last major Christian monarch forced into abdication.  That was the finality of the unleashing of the devil which may have begun with the Fall of Constantinople in 1453.  Socialism is the devil’s faith, as is Islam.  In the Soviet Union and China, the murders have been uncountable. 
                      The Democrats, or Demsheviks as I call them, are the American version of the Bolsheviks, the devil’s vanguard.  They are all unspeakably evil.  Every last one.  If they don’t openly advocate evil, they facilitate it by association with and empowerment of the DNC.  Hell will be full of them.
                      But the days of socialist secularism are numbered.  The devil’s reign, I believe, is coming to a close, not just beginning.  That may look like an autocratic takeover here in America.  But so be it.  Orthodoxy is inherently monarchial in its political teachings.  Anyone who disagrees has a problem with the Fathers, not with me.

                    • Gail Sheppard says

                      Good point. Maybe we’re at the end instead of the beginning. In either case, Christ is holding back His hand and all hell’s breaking loose.

                      A young cop was telling me the other day that I need to close my garage door behind me before I get out of my car and if I see someone in the garage I have to immediately gun the car and back over him. Lord have mercy. They’re talking about people invading our homes now. I may have to use that gun I bought which I hate. But hey, I’ve got a daughter and she needs me. I can feel God steeling me for what’s to come and with all the talking we do on the blog, they’ll be coming (or perhaps gunning???) for us.

                      To add to this, you’d be proud of me, Misha. Not too long ago, someone rang my bell at 11:30 at night. I have glass around my door so I took my gun with me and pointed it at the door from around the corner and slowly lowered it to my side where he could see it. The guy covered his head and ran away! So there! I can be tough. (Sort of.)

                    • Joseph A. says

                      And how horrible that any American — especially a lady — should have to be so cautious in her own home! America! It’s so saddening. I used to tell students that the normal state of mankind was Darfur. Rwanda. Mogadishu. Stable, peaceful societies that take care of their weak — of women, of children — they’re the exception. Abundance, comfort, and human flourishing are rare. I don’t think that our people understand this anymore. They’re so blind to anything not in front of their faces; they take it all for granted. And so they’re ungrateful and feel no sense of debt toward the nation at large (see how they think about respecting the flag), their ancestors, and even their own fellow citizens — not to mention the Lord. Of course, you can expect no willingness to sacrifice on the part of these folks. Can you imagine Americans today having to live through something like WWII? They feel as if they don’t owe anyone anything — because all the good things that they like “just happen” . . . and they feel mighty entitled to enjoy them. We have a whole population of insufferable, spoiled punks. God help us. Maybe, the coming trials will do just that. Luxury and riches have corrupted us. Perhaps, poverty and suffering will renew the land.

                • Indeed. I would say, however, that God wasn’t pulling puppet strings during these disasters but, like what Gail said, He removed His hand and permitted this to happen, in order to chastise His people for their sins.

                • George Michalopulos says

                  I completely agree with you Joseph.

            • Sage-Girl says

              you made some good points here, don’t forget when Jesus got mighty angry ? + made a rope slashing out against the money changers in temple, ‘his Father’s house’ + told them off calling them a den of thieves? 

              • Sage-Girl says

                Forgot Ecclesiastes: ?
                ”To everything there is a season; a time to love + a time to hate, a time for peace + a time for war”

            • Misha,
              I am no pacifist.   A veteran of the Iraq War, I have seen the results of violence up close.   Such rhetoric doesn’t help, friend.  Christ has two natures—-Healer and Judge, as He is God and Man.   One must not be overemphasized at the expense of the other.
              All warriors must be reluctant warriors.   That is the way of the Gospel.   The Golden Mean.
              The Founders are cited on this blog often, so I will do likewise and invoke one particular Founder:  John Dickinson.   Those who don’t know who he is, look him up.   An extraordinary man of principle and peace.   In all of these discussions about the Founders, he is the one I look to (if that is a hint about my politics or view on things). 

          • Antiochene Son says

            America told Christ to leave, so he has.
            In America today the president walks to a church holding a Bible and is mercilessly mocked for it.
            We may be in a time where symbols are all we have left, but to have a president in the midst of carnage hold up a Bible in a triumphant manner is surely going to rally the forces of evil all the more. Donald Trump is no saint, but he is as close to Constantine as we are probably ever going to get.

            • Gail Sheppard says

              I agree, AS.

            • Sage-Girl says

              Oh I love hearing ? ?this about President Trump holding up bible outside burning church …
              no worries, let the demons go ahead + mock the Light – every illumined Saint went through it – knowing Light wins 

            • Joseph A. says

              “Donald Trump is no saint, but he is as close to Constantine as we are probably ever going to get.”
              We’re really in trouble then — and I say that as an early and consistent Trump supporter. He is better than what we’ve seen lately, but he is manifestly inadequate for what we need (besides another Great Awakening, of course). At best, the better Republicans have been poorly functioning brakes as our clown car heads directly for the canyon ledge. We actually need to turn around — and soon.

              • George Michalopulos says

                Too late. Every other Republican was spineless. There were no “better Republicans” pre-2016. Even now Bush 43 is cucking hard for the Establishment. Many are growing spines, but that’s only because of Trump.

                Trump is the short-circuit which is going to bring the corrupt swamp-system down, one way or the other. Regrettably, I must agree with Misha, things are spiraling out of control, mostly by design. I’m a pacific guy but I believe it was Lenin who said, “you may not believe in the war, but the war believes in you”. Might as well go down fighting. Who knows? We might win. At this point, I hope –pray–that Trump declares martial law.

                P.S. Clearly, indictments are coming down soon, hence the well-funded riots.

              • Michelle says

                It’s interesting to see where leaders emerge.  Watch Tucker Carlson speak directly to Trump in this powerful take on the rioting:
                He frequently puts himself in the position of advisor to Trump, and Trump listens.

      • If things keep developing as they are, the Overton Window is going to shift to Segregation/Apartheid and/or Population Transfer (Expulsion) being the moderate, loving Christian position, in contrast to “Now yous can’t leave” which would be outright genocide.
        Watching Democrats, the open enemies of my race, sex, and even sexuality, murdering members of my race; for defending their property, driving while white, and wearing hats/shirts; is enough to question a lot of things, including the Civil Rights Movement, the “Civil War,” and even basic premises of the Founding Fathers.  Having seen how Rhodesia/Zimbabwe, South Africa, Sweden and the rest of Europe with the Muslims, not to mention good old USA, have developed since the 90s, the multi-cult society looks/feels like a suicide pact, and Russian/Putin autocracy looks better every day.


  14. Austin Martin says

    What was wrong with Jim Crow? It was messy, sure, but it was necessary to keep social order. None of these riots happened during Jim Crow and certainly not during slavery. I don’t see anything in the Bible or Tradition saying that all civil laws must be racially blind.

    You wrote:

    In the 1960s, the Civil Rights workers actually had something to show for their efforts in that the lives of ordinary blacks were improved. 

    In what possible way were the lives of ordinary blacks improved? Every major city has a section of town that used to be a thriving black business district and is now full of burned out crack hours and convenience stores. If you want to see the fruits of the Civil Rights Movement, take a visit to East St Louis some time.

    The Civil Rights Movement was based on Marxism, and Marxism can only destroy. Jim Crow and even slavery were net positives. Certainly the vast majority of blacks have not used their new freedom to live meaningful lives and pursue education. No one smoked crack and shot his baby mama on the plantation. There were no Bloods and Crips, no rap music, and no welfare scammers. The South was truly right.

    • Speaking of provocateurs who show up to cause trouble…

      • Austin Martin says

        Speaking of people who respond with emotions instead of facts.

        • Black people had their own neighborhoods because they had no choice.  It was a system of violence and terror at worst, and condescending inequality at best.   That is like saying it was better for us during the Turkish/Communist Yoke because “our Faith was stronger.”

          • Austin Martin says

            Bad analogy. Things have gotten better for the Greeks after the Turkish rule. But the black standard of living has collapsed under integration.

            • It’s not just about money.   Black people were terrorized up until the mid-20th century.   That can’t be “explained away” or justified.   Living in constant fear and in a degraded state?   How is that ok?

              • George Michalopulos says

                It’s not. That’s why we have laws to punish crimes against individuals. Laws which in the ideal are applicable to all miscreants.

              • Austin Martin says

                Oh terrorized? Constantly living in fear, you say? That’s a great lie of modern Marxist history. They take a few isolated incidents like Ed Johnson and claim this was the norm everywhere at all times.
                No, Black people were not constantly lynched for walking to the grocery store. No, you could not casually murder Black people and get away with it. However, they weren’t allowed to terrorize White neighborhoods.
                Which is a relevant point. You accuse Southern Whites of being terrorists, but turn on the news and tell me which race is doing most of the terrorizing?
                It is the 21st century’s lower income urban Whites who are “living in constant fear and a degraded state”, and it is definitely not okay.

                • I never said white southerners were terrorists.   I said Black people in the South were terrorized, which they were.   A lynching didn’t need to happen every day.   A few were enough, and a law enforcement establishment that made it clear what would happen to those who got “uppity.”

                  • Contemporary black-on-white crime probably trumps (no pun intended) any Jim Crow-era lynchings in terms of sheer numbers and regularity.

                    • What is right is not a numbers game.   Crime statistics and a state system of repression based on race are not equivalent.

                    • Let’s be honest and objective here: Rhodesia, South Africa, and the United States – despite the admittedly inhumane racial attitudes – were healthier, safer, and saner societies under the old laws.
                      It’s quite evident that any white/European nation that allows a large minority of swarthy foreigners to reside there has an increase in crime and social unrest, with some areas turning into third-world hellholes. This is an empirical fact, as we can see from any place in Europe that has succumbed to the multi-kulti, or those white nations outside the European homeland that have abandoned self-preservation laws.
                      You said that you were an Iraq veteran. So am I. Do you want to have Fallujah in Philadelphia? Because that’s what we’re getting.

  15. I’ve said it once and I’ll say 1000 times. The Democrats of today are the party of abortion, euthanasia, so-called gay marriage, gender bending, and every other godless abomination. You cannot be a Democrat and call yourself Orthodox (or a Christian in general). Their ideology represents everthing that is evil.

    • Sage-Girl says

      Bravo Mikhail !
      Did you watch our President stand outside church across White House holding up holy Bible where demon possessed rioters set ablaze on fire? 
      + now y’all know what I’m going to say:
      GO TRUMP!???

    • Antiochene Son says

      Indeed, Mikhail. If there is any doubt that the Democratic Party (to be fair, a lot of Republicans as well) are opposed to civilization itself, the mask is now completely off. This is so big that everyone must now take a side. Not a partisan side, but a side in an existential conflict, a cold civil war which is now hot.
      And if you’re against civilization you cannot be a Christian, and in particular an Orthodox Christian. We pray that civilization will be upheld in every single divine service.

  16. Antiochene Son says

    Interesting that our Orthodox jurisdictions wasted no time in issuing sweeping condemnations after Charlottesville, which objectively resulted in one vehicular death (after the police stood down and allowed a crowd to mob a car and the driver was almost certainly afraid for his life, and still got 400 years in prison for it).
    But there has been barely a peep about the nationwide riots destroying large swathes of cities, businesses, churches, as well as human lives, for which nobody will be made an example of, if they are punished at all.
    And this just after the awful handling of COVID-19 by the vast majority of our spiritual shepherds. Makes you wonder who they are listening to?

    • Yes, Antiochian Son. The OCA Bishops and Elpi were very swift in their condemnation of the injustice done to George Floyd…and silent on the ensuing wave of violence, looting, maiming, and destruction.
      The clown posse strikes again.

    • “Yes, Mr. Soros.”

  17. Sage-Girl says

    You got it Antiochene Son —
    The worst people in our society have taken control.  I’m embarrassed to hear PC excuses for the Zeitgeist blowing up in our face from even conservatives like VP Pence, Niki Halley, etc., someone tell me, how is this happening?
    It’s disheartening, Not enough politicians or Christian Hierarchs have spoken up in condemnation of the violent rioters even after a church got set on fire — this is Not Acceptable!
    Are some of us going to divorce ourselves from leaders who cannot lead?

  18. Gail Sheppard says

    It was staged.  The murder, the riots, all of it.  You’ve seen the cop with his knee on George Floyd’s neck.  His skewed badge was signaling that “it was on.”  That scene was staged which is why he was picture ready with his sunglasses perched perfectly on his head and his shirt neatly pressed and tucked in.
    Then some weird guy comes out of nowhere with his face covered with a respirator and carrying a black umbrella banging out windows.  Within hours, people were flooding the streets.
    Who was this weird dude?  Another cop of course.  These cops were in on it. 

    • There is no conspiracy.   That defies reason, and that is putting it charitably.   This is just another flair up of our National Wound, festering since 1865.   The virus has everyone wound up, and with a few of these incidents, the band broke.

      • Gail Sheppard says

        How many people have to tell you that you are wrong before you’ll even consider the possibility? THAT defies reason.

        • Are some groups stirring up trouble in crowds and using it for their own ends?  Absolutely.   It’s always been like that.  In the 60s, both the Marxists and the FBI did it.  
          But to say it was all staged?   No.   America has a race problem.
          It exploded like this because the virus and the effects of the anti-virus measures have already put people on edge, and created an economic situation where it was a perfect storm for civil unrest.   A few more controversial deaths at the hands of police, and that was the only spark needed.
          Recall the heated and angry anti-lockdown protests of the very recent past.     It didn’t take much, really.

      • The opinion that this was staged does seem far fetched, Brendan, but not out Of the realm of possibility.
        it is suspect how quickly everything exploded.
        time will tell

      • Sage-Girl says

        don’t you think that video of White policeman undercover smashing store windows looks suspicious + premeditated? It’s all possible …
        And yea festering wound from 1865 is true too – but don’t forget, slaves were sold by other blacks as well, and Lincoln gave them freedom to return to Africa.

        • George Michalopulos says

          Slavery was indeed endemic to Africa. As for the United States, 11% of slave-owners were black and/or biracial.

          • The first black slave in what later became the United States, John Casor, was not a slave when he landed in Virginia. He was an indentured servant. After a dispute over when his contract ended, he was declared a slave by a court in a civil case which declared him (not his contract) the property of the plaintiff, one Anthony Johnson –  himself a black man.
            So, if reparations are due to blacks for the evils of slavery, some at least of the funds should be paid by their fellow blacks.

          • Brigadier-General Stand Watie (the last Confederate General in the field to surrender to the Union) was not only Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation, he was himself a slaveholder.

            • George Michalopulos says

              True. The Five Civilized Tribes had slaves which they brought with them to Oklahoma during the Trail of Tears.

            • Michelle says

              The Tuscarora (Iroquoian-language speaking people related to Cherokee, also in NC) acted as slave brokers after Bacon’s rebellion.  They angered so many people (by taking white, black, and native slaves and selling them to each other) that they eventually begged the Quakers to accept them in PA, who refused, and were later integrated as the 6th nation among the Iroquois.

          • And then there’s this:
            Certain people are good at deflecting the responsibility of their sins onto others.

        • People see what they want to see. Context and truth are sacrificed in the name of ideologies and the passions. Our sense of reality is hopeless distorted in this way.
          The Slave system was a trauma that was not healed properly, like a bone that was not set correctly. Pointing to non-white slave owners is irrelevant, because the Slave system traumatized EVERYONE in different ways. There were blacks who benefited, just as there were whites who were crushed by it.
          Repentance is impossible if we are looking at who is to blame or wish to deny blame ourselves.
          “There is only one way to salvation, and that is to make yourself responsible for all men’s sins. As soon as you make yourself responsible in all sincerity for everything and for everyone, you will see at once that this is really so, and that you are in fact to blame for everyone and for all things.”

          • George Michalopulos says

            Of course chattel slavery qua slavery was evil. So what else is new? So was Indian Removal, the arrival of smallpox to the Americas, the genocidal nature of Aztec religion, the Rape of Nanking by the Japanese, the mass incarceration of the Uighers in China, the Armenian Holocaust, etc.

            what’s your point? None of the races mentioned believe they have some divine right to not have moral agency. The wounds are still festering. Ever heard of Kurdistan?

            The kakistrocrats who have ruled America for at least 40 years (through Academia, Hollywood, Big Business), have inculcated in minorities an attitude that is destructive to their own well-being.

            I for one, feel no white guilt because I have zero white privilege. And the poor whites of Appalachia have had even less white privilege than me. And they’re not exercising their collective grievances.

            • George,
              On this topic, you may find this recent article interesting:

            • The point is that we can’t just keep pretending that there is no problem, and that “radical leftists” are to blame.   
              This isn’t about “white guilt.”   This is about us acknowledging some harsh truths about ourselves.   As I said, no one wants to have the conversation.
              “White Privilege” is a misunderstood term.   All it is, is the acknowledgement that the Slave system benefited white Americans in tangible and intangible ways, and the opposite for black Americans.    It isn’t like Telly Savalas swaggering with the Players Club Card or a roll of Mentos where you can do what you want because you are white.
              I personally don’t like the term “privilege” because it lends itself to the sort of misunderstanding and distortion that we are seeing here.   
              You say “collective grievance” as if it is something contemptible.   How should grievances be addressed?

              • Collective grievance isn’t effectively addressed by systematically stripping blacks of their personhood: granting them asymmetrical treatment under the law, preference at universities based solely on skin color, dis-incentivizing family formation, de-funding the police in response to black crime, etc.
                There is a deep shame in the black community that is only exacerbated by AWFLs (Affluent White Female Liberals) and other white saviors, whose efforts serve only to, like I said, steal from them every last thing that makes them human–moral agency in particular.
                W/r/t slavery, cf Ezekiel 18:20: “The soul who sins shall die. The son shall not bear the guilt of the father, nor the father bear the guilt of the son. The righteousness of the righteous shall be upon himself, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon himself.”
                Mutual forgiveness–not collective (and arbitrary) punishment–is the needful thing in this and every moment.

                • I don’t disagree that harm has been done to the black community in the name of “helping them” (the Bureau of Indian Affairs is another infamous example of this effect), but as a white man it isn’t for me to tell them what is “good for them” or not.
                  I’m interested in the spiritual effects, which in my mind is THE foundation for all of the problems.    I posted a link to an article Father Stephen Freeman wrote on his blog, which goes to the heart of it, I think.
                  We as a nation never repented of the sin of Slavery.   We suffered for it, regretted it, but we didn’t repent, because no Metanoia took place (even Judas was sorry).   Jim Crow sprang up right after it.   In the Civil Rights era, white liberals called off the attack dogs, said “No hard feelings, right?” and then told them “Good Luck!”    Some government programs were enacted, but the collective trauma was not addressed, I think.      That includes on white people, too.     
                  Why is there so much fear?    
                  A system built on fear and repression isn’t easily “gotten over.”     We just “plowed forward” and didn’t really go through the messy process of repentance.   We just shifted blame, threw our ancestors under the bus and then wonder why black communities are disadvantaged compared to whites?    Red lining, white flight and gentrification are not just liberal phantoms, but they actually happened.
                  Forgiveness can only happen with repentance.   But what would that repentance even look like?   Have we ever really repented of anything as a nation in our entire history?  Instead of looking at the ground, shuffling our feet, bleat out a  sorry and then move on as if we got a playground mulligan?
                  I think this is where the conversation needs to go if we can truly turn the page on this issue.   It goes deeper than the government band-aids of affirmative action or “reparations.” 
                  It will take the Grace of God.    But for us and our brothers and sisters who are POC (minorities, or whatever “term” that is used) it is the prayer of our times.

                  • Gail Sheppard says

                    Note: Everytime you see the word “you” I am speaking generally.

                    I know a woman who was adopted and though her family knew she was a POC through her biological father, they didn’t tell her. Because she didn’t know, she didn’t feel slighted by the past. She didn’t go around saying, “Gee, the reason I can’t get ahead is because this nation hasn’t repented or made reparations to my people.” It never occurred to this young woman, who is now an executive, that her success was dependent upon anything other than her own ability. And because she worked hard, she didn’t feel the inadequacy some people feel when they’re sitting at the “big table”, knowing they don’t deserve to be there.

                    Of course, you’re going to feel inadequate if you’re unprepared to compete. How are you going to be prepared to compete when you are surrounded by people who expect so little of you that they give you that A when you really deserve a C or get you into that college because of the color of your skin instead of your achievments.

                    You’re going to be woefully unprepared for the real world if you’re treated with kid gloves like this. It’s not the slave owner from several generations ago that’s keeping you back. It is your own unwillingness to move forward that keeps you from getting what you want. You need to move away from the people who tell you otherwise. It’s the lack of skills that make you feel unworthy because no one expected you to learn them. You’re being taught that you don’t have to work as hard as everyone else to get ahead. It’s a lie.

                    Your color will stop mattering when you stop looking for repentance and reparations on the part of everyone else and start seeing yourself as capable of reaching the same goals the same way, i.e. through hard work. Don’t even think about calling me a racist. If I were a racist, I wouldn’t believe it was possible for you to succeed on your own merit but I do. It is those who believe you’re just not up to the task who are the racists and sadly, you find many of them within your own community. Don’t let them set you up for failure. Look around you. You are failing when you’re marching in the streets looting, setting fires, and generally terrorizing people. – And don’t align yourselves with the people (I’m talking about white people now) who support the narrative that you’ve been wronged because they’re operating under their own deficits. They want to feel relevant which is why they’re holding onto you. They’re basking in your light when they are seen on TV or they post something pithy on Twitter to look enlightened. Cut them off. They will only drag you down.

                    Move away from the crowd and distinguish yourself. Stop whining about what was and do the work. If you do the work and quit shaming other people for your circumstances, no one is going to see your color. The color part goes away when the people of color let it.

                    You don’t believe me? I can put you in touch with several black people who will tell you what I’m telling you is true. These are black people who can more than hold their own. Why? BECAUSE THEY EARNED IT. Why? BECAUSE THEY COULD.

                    You don’t need anyone else to succeed. You just need to believe it’s possible.

                    Stepping off my soap box now. . .

                    • Keep the soapbox handy. It becomes you…

                    • And what of the people who do “everything right” and still fail?   For every one person who “makes it,” there are two more who don’t.
                      If you ask America (as a people), they say its your fault (whether that is true or not) that you’re poor.   Poverty is treated as self-inflicted, and a source of shame.    Add to that the trauma of the Slave legacy, and you have a recipe for a deeply wounded community.
                      The fact that some people “rise above” is laudable, but it doesn’t address the fundamental fact that something is very wrong.    Most Americans are one pay check away from the street.    Is that “making it?”
                      Lowered expectations is bigoted, but what if they were not given reason to expect much in the first place?   
                      “Pull yourself together” is quite easy for many of us to say.   And that isn’t just about race either.    It is this temptation to condescension that triggered the “Ok, Boomer” backlash.    There is an increasing feeling among the young that the Baby Boomers jacked up the credit card and left them with the bill, and then get indignant when Boomers tell them to “suck it up.”   The young are not totally wrong, either.
                      There is an increasing cognitive dissonance between what we are taught (and believe) as Americans and the reality of America. 
                      It is this cognitive dissonance that is causing the trouble we are seeing today.

                    • Gail Sheppard says

                      I don’t buy it. Those who do “everything right and fail” are an anomaly. Most people are poor at various times during their lives but it’s not a lifetime predicament.

                      I was poor in college, I was poor out of college when my first boss brought me to CA in the late 70s. I got paid $275 twice a month. My rent was $275 and my car payment was $275 and I still made it because not making it was not an option. My grandmother gave me $25 a month and I ate once a day until I got a raise and then a better job.

                      What you’re offering here are excuses and if you buy into those excuses, you’re going to be poor for all time. It’s a choice. No one is doing it to you. There is no “trauma of slavery”. It does not exist. It’s just one more excuse. I could make my bottom lip quiver and have tears streaming down my face because of a lot of life experiences I’ve had, too, but I don’t let it define me.

                      I have a very small amount on credit and pay it all off quarterly.

                      I think this “deeply wounded” community likes playing the victim because there are a lot of opportunities out there ESPECIALLY FOR BLACKS. But the old adage that “you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink it” applies here.

                      And worse, they blame others for their situation.

                      I’m over it. I don’t believe it. As a community I see them do things I would never do. Out of their mouths, I hear excuse, after excuse, after excuse. I see them gravitate to candidates with whom they have nothing in common other than the candidate promises “Christmas” all year round without them having lift a finger. They saw Obama as Santa Clause but he did nothing for them. Of course, they’re always disappointed because it’s always a lie.

                      I know a LOT of black people who think this “woe is me” is a bunch of hooey. But they’re the ones who did the work.

                  • “There is no “trauma of slavery”. It does not exist.”
                    I think the history of race relations in this country disproves this statement.
                    Anecdotal success stories are not the sum of the situation.   Something is wrong, and to chalk it up to laziness is not getting at the root of the problem.
                    It isn’t “woe is me.”    Some may use it as an excuse, sure.   There are opportunists everywhere.   It is not everyone, and this keeps happening, over and over and over again.
                    I won’t argue it anymore, as you’ve made up your mind. 
                    But I will conclude with this:  Denial got us here in the first place as a nation.    Until we ask the hard questions and seriously take stock, the wounds will never heal. 

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Brandon, there is no doubt that there was indeed a “trauma” to slavery. Specifically for the slaves themselves and perhaps the three to four generations that lived under the Jim Crow regime. But that died out two generations ago. The further one gets from a national trauma, the less traumatic it becomes.

                      Case in point: as a Greek-American I was brought up to believe that the four hundred years of Turkish occupation was traumatic. But that ended two hundred years ago. It didn’t stop my dad from emigrating to America and getting a job, or me acquiring a profession. Likewise the Armenian Holocaust. Armenia today is a viable nation and the Armenian diaspora are mostly successful. Yet all of them know of a relative or ancestor who was brutalized and/or murdered.

              • “All it is, is the acknowledgement that the Slave system benefited white Americans in tangible and intangible ways, and the opposite for black Americans.”

                The slave system didn’t help anyone: other than the Africans who sold their own people (for a millennia before Europeans), the ship owners, and the slave masters.  Everyone else, 99.9% of the population, would’ve been infinitely better off without slavery.  In fact, you could say it hurt whites far more, because the black slaves still would’ve been slaves anyway, only back in Africa, owned by other blacks, unless they were sold to Muslims instead.

                • George Michalopulos says

                  The slave system was worse than that for poor whites in that it depressed the wages of poor whites.  That was pointed out by Alexis de Toqueville in his book Democracy in America when he compared the economies and landscapes of Indiana (a free state) with Kentucky (a slave state).

                  Of course, that’s little different from what obtains today with the Chamber of Commerce/Wall Street types who want open immigration into the US.  It drives down the wages of ordinary native Americans.

                  • It was, but poor whites found their niche as overseers, journeyman  in the trades, and as the enforcers of the slave order.
                    It isn’t about who “suffered the most,” but the spiritual effects of our lack of repentance.   We still as a culture devalue human life and think in terms of money.   The proliferation of Abortion and Euthanasia and the Culture of Death is related, because we never repented. 
                    We were “sorry” for slavery, but we didn’t root out the passions that lead to slavery in the first place.
                    This isn’t about wages.    I firmly believe that until we stop thinking in those terms, we can’t move forward or heal.

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Of course you’re right, it is about repentance. But the polity is not the Church. Wages are not as important as repentance to be sure. But working men need to be able to feed their families as well. If slavery is wrong (and it is), then the servitude that results from the loss of wages, is only marginally better.

                      What we’re talking about is employers bidding for working-men’s labor. In a servile system, they don’t have to do that, the poor show up and accept whatever work they can. Trump upended that system.

                • Myst:  The slave system was an integral part of the economy, North, South, and globally.   Banning the slave trade was a hollow gesture, as slave populations were sufficiently stable to self-perpetuate, and “morality” didn’t stop England, France et al from buying Southern cotton and goods, which they did with relish (as well as from the Spanish Empire and other places where slavery was still legal).   
                  This doesn’t even cover the Northern banking and financial system, textiles and tradesmen, shop keepers and other laborers who got money from doing business with the Planter class.    People profited from it.   Everybody was touched by it (and/or hurt by it).   That includes African tribal leaders, the Ottomans, and whoever else was “doing business” in Africa and the Caribbean.
                  You’re right, we would have been much better off, but there was too much money to be made.   The Cotton Gin and Manchester saw to that.     We rise together.   We fall together.  We sin together.

                  • George Michalopulos says

                    Brandon, the European (white) slave trade in the Islamic world was just as horrendous as the African slave trade. Nobody of European descent is asking for reparations from the Turks and the other Muslims.

                    • George:  Nor should they, because reparation without repentance is just extortion (look at Germany after World War I).
                      Of course, wages matter.   But they rise and fall like the tides.   The post-World War II economic boom that formed so much of our thoughts about economics and life was an aberration, and it has ended.  The world is returning to its (un)natural order.    This is where a lot of the angst comes from, I think.   People don’t want that America to end.
                      As for President Trump,  all I will say is that I don’t think he is upending anything.   The adulation for Trump is the same syndrome that afflicted Obama’s presidency.   People are putting their faith in a man, and that faith will be stomped into the ground, as it always is.   Politics as WWE.   Trump is “the Heel.”
                      Any “gains” that are perceived will be destroyed in very short order.   There is no “draining the swamp.”   Political power is by its nature a swamp.   The goal is to have a sturdy airboat.   People have forgotten this and have been star struck by this man (or lost all sense of reality).
                      When he fails and disappoints, the pundit class will go casting about for a new “savior” and the cycle will repeat itself.    Emperor Two-Face and his new hat.   I don’t wade into political debates because it’s all theater (like Wrestling).    I don’t smell what the Rock is cooking.
                      The Gospel has the answer for this too, though.   The manual for a sound swamp boat.  Peace in the midst of strife.     

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Brandon, your words are indeed wise. In addition, you said something that has been plaguing me for the past several months and that is that “the world may be returning to its natural order” (more or less).

                      Yes, we in America have taken for granted things like running water, a solid electrical grid, convenient cooking, indoor washing machines, etc. Tribalism, collective revenge, xenophobic neighborhoods on the other hand are the “natural” state of affairs. That however is a story for another day.

                      Your words re President Trump are wise as well. As for me, I know he’s a man but as Lincoln said of Grant, “I can’t get rid of him, the man knows how to fight”. Right now, normal America has no choice but to back Trump. He’s the only thing at this point that will stand in the way of an actual defunding of the police. If you want to see LA turn into Thunderdome or New York really become the backdrop for Escape from New York (or more likely, The Warriors), then that’s your ticket.

                      In any event, there is no doubt in my mind that Trump has “upended” the system. That’s why all this nonsense is happening, whether it’s Mueller, Russia Collusion Hoax, Ukrainegate, impeachment, COVID and now the George Floyd festivities. Trump has upended the system in this manner as well: for the first time in a long time, employers have been bidding for the labor of working men and not just the white working class but blacks as well. Before COVID, the black unemployment rate was the lowest it’s ever been and black approval rating of Trump was in the 34% range. That’s huge. And that’s why the Dems had to unleash all this tumult, to get blacks back on the plantation.
                      Even during all the recent tumult, Rasmussen put out a poll that showed black approval of Trump was approaching 40%.

                      At the risk of engaging in inside baseball, that means that Trump –who won election with 8% of the black vote in 2016–is well on his way to doubling that. The dirty little secret of course is that anything north of 8% ensures his reelection (provided the white vote remains constant).

                      More inside baseball: the Dems had a chance in depressing Trump’s white vote share by increasing his unpopularity in the suburbs. Now, because of all this, and the brain-damaged policies being put forth by the urban elites, this trend is being reversed. Sorry folks, but the last thing a soccer mom driving her minivan full of kids from the soccer game to the Chucky Cheese wants to see is to see sanctimonious police kneeling in front of “protesters”. Every liberal white person I know is sincerely not a racist. Yet every last liberal white person I know lives in a lilly-white enclave.

                      The present tumultuous events remind all the white suburbanites why they moved to the suburbs in the first place. All Trump has to do is remind them that when Julian Castro was Obama’s HUD Sec, he devised a plan to force the suburbs to be more integrated. Poor fellow, he lamented the fact that America was fracturing into solidly white ZIP codes. (But then again, he decried the fact that trans-men couldn’t get abortions.)

                      Sorry for the rant. Off to church! God bless, Brother!

                    • “Nobody of European descent is asking for reparations
                      from the Turks and the other Muslims.”
                      Perhaps they should.
                      Perhaps the Greeks should demand as reparation
                      the return of the Agia Sophia Cathedral…

                    • George Michalopulos says

                      Hey –now that you mention it…

          • Antiochene Son says

            If every person is guilty of all the sins of mankind (I’m not sure about that theology), then no one is particularly guilty either. White people, or Americans in 2020, are no more guilty of slavery than the Africans who sold them out, or the Jews who shipped them over here, or the British who imported them.
            Yet white people are blamed and are made to kneel and told to cough up $14 trillion to make it better.
            My people were not even in this country until the 20th century. I am no more responsible for American slavery than an Indian-Jamaican like Kamala Harris was a victim of it.
            My people were subjected to horrible crimes and genocide in history. Am I to carry on like the professional victims out there in America today? Or is it my white privilege to be able to comprehend that no person from that country or ethnicity ever did me wrong? 
            Leftism focuses on systems and collectives, while Christ is concerned with the repentance of the individual soul. (Yes we work out salvation in the collectivity of the Church, but in the terrible day of judgment we stand alone before God.) Leftism says “we need to address poverty” while Christ says to give your own meal to that hungry person outside your door. 

            • This is about acknowledging the reality of what happened in our history with no qualifiers, justifications or caveats.  For everyone, not just white people.  And then, having the conversation about how to move forward together.    That is the more difficult part, because there are people on both sides who have a vested interest in keeping the strife going.
              A big part of authentic reconciliation is taking blame and at the same time letting go of it.     I can acknowledge the advantages the slave legacy has given me as a white person and at the same time reject the weaponization of it.   It’s like how people use “I’ll pray for you” as a way to hurt someone, rather than what it was intended for.
              As for “reparations,” there are multiple opinions on that.   I personally find the conversation has taken a distasteful turn, because it brings everything back to money.   It need not be “cash payouts.”    There are a multitude of ways to provide assistance to black communities under the banner of “reparations.”     That is a political discussion, and I want no part of that.   I’m focused on the spiritual aspect of all this.

              • ” I can acknowledge the advantages the slave legacy has given me as a white person and at the same time reject the weaponization of it.”

                No, you can’t.  I mean you can here, but you try to make that distinction in regular social media (Twitter/Instragram/etc), with your full real name, and God help you.  You’d just be an Alt-Right Nazi, a White Supremacist, who has conceded the key point of White Supremacy and yet still has the audacity to defend institutionalized racism against social justice.

                • I’ve had a few unexpected conversations over the years.  We both may be surprised.
                  Social media isn’t the place for this conversation.  It is (with some exceptions) a place of monologue, not dialogue.   I wouldn’t even try to talk about this in a public forum, because now is not the time.   People are angry, and nobody is in the mood to listen on either side.    The time will come, but it isn’t today.
                  Father Stephen Freeman wrote an excellent article that sorts it out quite well.    The conversation isn’t on this level, and it should be, I think.  

                  • ” I wouldn’t even try to talk about this in a public forum, because now is not the time.”

                    Now is not the time, but tomorrow will be even worse, and so on, and so forth.

                    Batman Writer-Artist Sean Gordon Murphy Cancels Himself:

                    8:30-9:15, “I’m accusing you of kneeling down in reaction to pressure from your enemies. No reasonable, normal, non malicious person could possibily miscontrue what you said, which was a very bland pronouncement for peace and the right to peaceably protest. You’re bowing, and scraping, and kneeling before people who would laugh if you were dead in the street, who would high-five eachother if you became homeless, who everyday plan to harm you, and their greatest co-conspirator is yourself.”

                    1200 public health experts have signed an open letter asserting that Black Lives Matter mass gatherings should be encouraged because “white supremacy” is a bigger health threat than COVID-19.
                    Yes, really.
                    “White supremacy is a lethal public health issue that predates and contributes to COVID-19,” states the letter, before adding, “Black people are twice as likely to be killed by police compared to white people, but the effects of racism are far more pervasive,” (a claim which is completely misleading given that black people are far likelier to be involved in violent confrontations with police).
                    The letter goes on to basically assert that COVID-19 isn’t a threat, so long as people are protesting against racism, which is a bigger threat, a completely ludicrous assertion that sounds like it came straight from a far-left protest group, not 1200 public health experts.

                    • The passions are still running wild.   People are stirred up.    It will take some time.

                  • …[The] problem from an Orthodox standpoint is that slavery is not a sin.  It was even touted as a positive good by St. John Chrysostom.  Only one of the Fathers, St. Gregory of Nyssa wrote against it.  Time and time again it is taken for granted in scripture and the Fathers.  It was the law of the land in England when we broke from her and in America at the founding.  It was only gradually abolished in northern states over decades, slowly, due to economic factors.  In the South, one would have had a clear conscience growing up in that culture regarding the moral aspect.  It was politics which was the aggravating factor.  People did not just simply “know” from heaven that slavery was wrong as if there were some objective principle written in black fire on white fire in the sky.  Our morality has developed away from slavery but that is a question of political will.  Many are too weak to see that, the overwhelming context of our culture dictating their emotions and therefore their morality.  But that is the truth.

              • I’m ethnically Greek, I don’t need to take the blame for anything, thank you very much. 400 years of Ottoman yoke and you won’t see me bleating about it for years on end.

              • Antiochene Son says

                I acknowledge without qualifications that slavery was unjust, but I’ll never get an unqualified acknowledgement that I had nothing to do with it.
                I don’t believe there is a way to “move forward together,” either racially or politically. The United States is balkanized in every way. Who is happy in this country? 
                Let’s face it: No one in America is happy because every person in this country is being forced to live according to some set of rules that is intolerable to them. The changes that BLM and Antifa want, I do not want. The changes I want, they do not. Some might say, “that’s part of living in a society,” but no, it really isn’t. The point of democracy is for the people to get what they want. If the people are diametrically opposed, then you really have two different nations occupying the same territory. That’s what you call a civil war.
                There will be no kumbaya coming together on common ground—there is no common ground. We are beyond where the Americans were in 1776 at this point, because this now touches everyone; the war for independence was in many ways a rich man’s war. Today we have society falling apart at the street level.
                The only peaceful way forward is to literally dissolve the country and allow everyone to go their own way. Instead of fighting, give everyone the opportunity to live with the changes they want within their own enclave.
                Sure it’s insane, so insane it’s not worth discussing. But until that happens, it will be a low-grade civil war with increasing flare-ups over time—you think 2020 is bad, wait till 2040 or 2060. The longer it goes on, the worse it will get.
                So we can continue fighting until one side wins, or we can call a truce and go our separate ways. There is no other option.

                • Maybe the US is destined for dissolution. Maybe not. I hope not.

                  “The point of democracy is for the people to get what they want.”

                  You’ve touched on something here. I think this is where the discussion needs to start. What DO we want? Perhaps there is a problem with our answer, and that is a source of the conflict.

                  • Antiochene Son says

                    Oh, I pray for dissolution. There will be far less death than with any other means of resolution.
                    I want people to live in nation states where they can reasonably live out the destiny of the collectivity they identify with. If that is a nation of descendants of slaves, so be it. If that is a nation of descendants of German immigrants, so be it. If that is a colorblind Christian society, so be it. If that is a hedonist Anarcho-Capitalist society, so be it. If such people live in the US today, then there is room on this planet for them to carve out a territory and have a go.
                    When we decide to do this, there ought to be a congress of all interested parties and draw the lines in a peaceful manner, let everyone go where they want to go, and get on with our lives. What each of those groups do after that is for them to decide, but this is something we all should want.
                    But I know it will never happen. Too many people see the world through star-spangled glasses, and too many people want to absolutely dominate everyone else, rather than take theirs and go home.

          • Michelle says

            I appreciate your thoughts and your capitalization of your name.  It helps.
            I posted the following on social media on Monday for two hours before taking it down:
            “Dear Friends,
            I hope everyone is doing well with the current crisis.
            If you are serious about ending slavery, please consider the types of goods that you purchase and where you purchase them from.

            I have a hard time taking certain people seriously when they are for the most part clothed in cotton goods sewn by poor Bangladeshi women and their children, and typing away on Apple products made at slave labor Foxconn plants.
            Here is a list: https://www.dol.gov/sites/dolgov/files/ILAB/ListofGoods.pdf
            Destroying goods means that we must “employ” more slaves to create the things destroyed in the name of “anti-racism.”

            I agree with the “structural inequality” arguments, etc.; and from my experience with young children I do think that we are all genetically predisposed to racism.  However, are we to completely ignore our *actual* employment of forced labor so that we may focus our efforts on “Black Lives Matter,” which is clearly making racism worse?
            I cannot pretend that these riots are about race.  We are all forced to wear masks, police were arresting people for surfing the ocean, and the general consensus was that the police needed to step down and that *no one* could breathe.  Woke people were not allowed to say that they wanted to go outside, so they needed an excuse to protest.  All of the criminals were out of jail.  God gave us an hilarious plot twist by making the dude’s death a Covid death.  I pray that these riots mean that we will no longer be forced to get a vaccine.  
            If I’m being honest, this is not an argument for or against anything you said.  I think the “victimization pyramid” will always exist and that Christ tells us that we are to protect children as the most vulnerable.  I am really only posting to you because I have now been isolated for two months and three weeks.  Hope you are all well.

            • Thank you.   I pray you are well also.     
              Riots are an explosion of anger and an extreme act of lashing out.   There are all kinds of “reasons” in there.     The protests on the other hand, are about America’s racial issues.     I think differentiating between the peaceful protests and the riots is important, because there are people who have an interest in equating the two (in either direction).

          • Elder Zosima: “…this is really so…you are in fact
            to blame for everyone and for all things.”
            This reads very like the Augustinian notion of Original Sin.

            • Elder Zosima: “…this is really so…you are in fact to blame for everyone and for all things.”

              Reads as an exercise in humility to me.  Much like “I, I alone will be condemned to Hell,” as the monk is thinking of himself as the worst sinner ever, fulfilling Scripture that some will be condemned, while thinking optimistically about everyone else.

              • It could be an exercise in humility.
                But “…this is really so…in fact” bothers me.
                There are truth claims here – false truth claims.

                Hence it could also be an exercise in self-importance,
                in passive-aggressive self- aggrandisement:
                “See how I answer for the sins of others
                (and avoid answering for my own)!”
                There are layers under layers in Dostoevsky…

                • While I certainly understand the reluctance to accept personal responsibility for the sins of others, perhaps it becomes more ‘palatable’ if we consider the prayer of Daniel, among the most righteous and faithful men that ever lived.
                  “O Lord, to us belongs shame of face, to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, because we have sinned against You. To the Lord our God belong mercy and forgiveness, though we have rebelled against Him.  We have not obeyed the voice of the Lord our God, to walk in His laws, which He set before us by His servants the prophets.”
                  Note the “us” and the “we” of this prayer.  He does not distinguish himself from the people to whom he is connected or view himself as autonomous, but in Christ-like fashion he takes up and bears the burden of sin.  It may be unpopular to think in this way, but it is the truth of things.  For whether we like it or not, whether we consider it ‘fair’ or not, we bear the burden of the sins of the whole world.  Consider that if this were not the case, we could easily separate ourselves from all the violence and corruption of those around us and be completely unaffected by it.  But we cannot, and this fact alone should convince us of the mystery of our sharing in the sins of all humanity, none of which can be redeemed if we do not take it upon ourselves.

                  • I think you misunderstand my point. Of course we all bear the burden of sin. I have no problem with that and accept my share. My people’s burden is also mine.
                    If, however, Elder Zosima is correct in what he appears to say (I have not, cannot, read the text in Russian so am in the hands of the translator) that “…[we] are in fact to blame for everyone and for all things“, then we must all be guilty of all the sins that have ever been sinned – including the sin of Adam; of which we must all carry the taint and from which the Theotokos will have required an Immaculate Conception to preserve her.
                    Do you see the problem now?

                    • Indeed I do, Brendan.

                      Yet Christ seems not to care about who is to blame for Mary Magdalene’s having had seven demons, for Matthew or Zacchaeus having become men of greed, for the Gadarene demoniac’s condition, for how the harlots came to be harlots, and the list goes on…ending with you and me. Each of us, whether we realize it or not, has back stories of how the sins of others (ancestors, parents, abusers) and yes, our own choices explain how we came to be what we are, as well as how our sins affect those around us.

                      If one removes the (somewhat juridical and extremely Western) concepts of guilt and culpability from the sin of which we are all victims, as well as perpetrators, the net result is the same. Is it not?

                      Each person is like a twig on the diseased tree of humanity from which none can be separated. I take the point of the fictitious Elder (though other real elders say essentially the same thing) to be that until we can confess our participation in – and therefore responsibility for- the whole sin of humanity as perpetrators ourselves, neither we personally nor the entire tree can be healed.

                      It seems to me that accepting the blame (if one insists on using that word) is to cease being concerned about who is to blame and to place one’s self and the entire tree of humanity at the good, unfathomable, and unfailing mercy of God.

                    • I am afraid you have just muddied the waters.
                      Here are some quotes from:
                      1) In the Book of Genesis, Chapter 3, Adam and Eve committed a sin, the original sin. The Eastern Orthodox Church teaches that no one is guilty for the actual sin [Adam and Eve] committed but rather everyone inherits the consequences of this act;
                      2) Orthodox Christians have usually understood Roman Catholicism as professing St. Augustine’s teaching that everyone bears not only the consequence, but also the guilt, of Adam’s sin.
                      3) This difference between the two Churches in their understanding of the original sin was one of the doctrinal reasons underlying the Catholic Church’s declaration of its dogma of the Immaculate Conception in the 19th century, a dogma that is rejected by the Orthodox Church.
                      4) For the Greek Fathers, as the consequence of Adam’s sin, human beings inherited corruption, possibility, and mortality, from which they could be restored by a process of deification made possible through the redemptive work of Christ. The idea of an inheritance of sin or guilt – common in Western tradition – was foreign to this perspective, since in their view sin could only be a free, personal act. . .” 
                      Brian: “…blame (if one insists on using that word)”
                      The word is used by Elder Zosima (or the translator).
                      Whether Dostoevsky intended his character to express this thought, or whether it was erroneously attributed by the translator, I do not know – as I said above. However, if he did, then perhaps Elder Zosima is not intended to be as Orthodox as he seems in the tale.

                    • Brendan,
                      Zosima was speaking monk-speak, the art of over the top humility.  He wasn’t making a doctrinal statement.  No, Adam’s guilt does not infect us like a diseased tree.  God Himself set the penalty for the ancestral sin as Death; i.e., living in a perishable world.  Christ overcame that not by coming back from the dead but by passing through death into the imperishable life to come. 
                      Much of our sin is our reaction to our imperfect, perishable limitations and to decay and death itself. 

                      Better not to dwell on these types of things guys, it’s like chasing your tail.

                    • Misha: “Zosima was speaking monk-speak,
                      the art of over the top humility.”
                      Indeed. As I said earlier: “…it could…be an exercise in
                      self-importance, in passive-aggressive self- aggrandisement:”
                      Dostoevsky is certainly a good enough writer to show this.
                      As for each of us being guilty of each and every sin that has ever been sinned: are any of us really that important?

                    • Actually, Brendan, it appears that the waters are muddied by the apparent fact that you seem to think I am writing/thinking in terms of so-called “original sin” – an error that begat layers upon layers of additional errors and one that you have accurately described and rightly condemn.

                      We agree 100% on that point. Original sin (so-called) is a doctrine of demons that is nothing less than calumny of God.

                      I will leave it there, though, as I have no desire to argue any further.

                    • And finally from me…
                      Brian, my concern is not what you think.
                      My concern is what Elder Zosima thinks,
                      as Dostoevsky or the translator depicts him.